University of South Dakota assistant track and field coach Derek Miles will be presented an Olympic bronze medal after a Ukrainian pole vaulter was disqualified from the 2008 Olympics for violating anti-doping rules, the school said Thursday.
The ceremony for Miles, who originally placed fourth in the event, will be held Monday, the university said in a statement. The International Olympic Committee announced in November that re-analysis of Ukrainian pole vaulter Denys Yurchenko's samples from Beijing 2008 resulted in a positive test for a banned substance. Yurchenko lost his bronze medal.
Miles, South Dakota U.S. Sen. John Thune and U.S. Olympic Committee CEO Scott Blackmun are set to speak at the event. Thune in March wrote to the president of the International Olympic Committee and called on the committee to take all appropriate measures to award a bronze medal to Miles.
"It's an unbelievable honor to play a small part in helping Derek receive the overdue recognition he deserves," Thune said in a statement. "While nothing can replace standing on the podium in Beijing, I think Derek would agree that getting to share this moment with friends, family, and the students at USD will be a memory not soon forgotten."
Miles is a three-time Olympian, competing in 2004, 2008 and 2012. He lives in Tea, South Dakota, and has been with the University of South Dakota track and field program for 14 years.